THE early modern period – broadly the era from 1500 to 1800– has been characterized as encapsulating the first phase of globalization. Scholars such as Chandra Mukerji, Richard Goldthwaite, Evelyn Welch, and Lisa Jardine, among many others, have demonstrated that the Renaissance was a period that saw not only the reassessment of ancient art and literature but also an increase in the exchange of material goods from around the world.1 These global mercantile connections emerged alongside Humanist interests, fostering a changing art market and a culture of consumption. This shift, along with the encounter of new lands full of novel artefacts and natural specimens, led in turn to the development of collections and an increase in the trading and exchange of goods among the élite, and along with this impulse and ability to amass, display, and...

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